The split between male and female players in the gaming industry is shrinking every year, and it is now estimated that 45 percent of gamers are female. This means that these players need greater representation, and it has led to a huge rise in protagonists that are women.
Some female leads have been incredibly memorable and are up there with the best characters in video game history.
Tomb Raider is One of the Most Iconic Franchises Ever
Tomb Raider is one of the most iconic game series of all time, and it has had a huge impact on the industry. Lara Croft did a lot for the increase in female protagonists in games, as many male gamers realized they enjoyed playing as a female character instead of a man.
The series that was originally published by Eidos Interactive has lasted for almost 30 years, and it has stayed fresh through sequels, reboots, and spinoffs for different platforms. When Square Enix bought the rights to the game in 2010, the company decided to expand the franchise, and this resulted in new ways to play as the legendary Lara Croft.
On mobile, there are hit titles like Lara Croft Go, which is a unique puzzle game, and Lara Croft: Relic Run, which is an endless running offering. There are even mobile casino games featuring the artifact-seeking adventurer. These include Tomb Raider: Secret of the Sword and Lara Croft: Temples and Tombs. The fact that the franchise has spread out onto other mediums and found great success is a testament to the star power of the leading character.
Other Games Have Had Memorable Female Leads
The list of top-selling games with female leads is now endless, and there are fantastic titles emerging every year. One of the most recent successes was The Last of Us Part II, which featured Ellie from the previous game and a new playable character, Abby.
It was the fastest-selling PlayStation 4 exclusive ever with four million copies sold in its first weekend. The Naughty Dog offering also earned a record number of Game of the Year awards.
Ubisoft has seen how powerful female protagonists can be and decided to take an interesting approach with its latest two Assassin’s Creed games: Odyssey and Valhalla. In both titles, players have the option to choose whether to play as a male or female at the start.
In the Greek mythology-based adventure, after players choose their character, the other one becomes the villain. But in the more recent Norse mythology-themed epic, there are no notable effects of the gender choice. Having the opportunity to select, though, means that both men and women are catered for.
It also allows players to experience the game through a different lens on their second playthrough.
Along with these intriguing and exciting female leads, there are plenty of other notable characters. Clementine from the Walking Dead games and Aloy from Horizon Zero Dawn is another couple of amazing women in games. There is a strong argument for female leads being better than males in the realm of video games.